While lying on my chiropractor’s table today, I had time to think about blog post ideas. If only I’d written them down.
I guess I’ll just have to wing this one.
Let’s see. Well, I feel really proud of all the inner work I’ve done toward healing my relationship with my body. It is a commitment every single day. But, I find it completely unavoidable to be reminded that my fat body type is the butt of stupid sitcom punchlines and the worst nightmare of every human in Los Angeles, including me (sometimes).
I’m tired, ya’ll.
I am a woman. I am a woman of color. I am a fat woman of color. I am living in a city where billboards donning, thin, white women with perky tits and quarter size nipples try to entice me into getting the fat sucked out of my ass for just $99 down. It’s fucking tempting.
As some of you know, I had liposuction when I was 23. I was about the same size as I am today (230 pounds and a size 18), and I hated myself something serious. I desperately believed, with my early 20’s, brainwashed, depressed, confused heart, that my life was going to be beyond my wildest dreams if I could just be thin. So, 11 pounds of fat sucked out of my thighs, butt and stomach later, I was ready to see my name up in lights.
It did’t turn out exactly as I’d hoped. It’s kind of a long story that I’ll have to share another time. I promise.
My point is that I have plenty of white patriarchal forces that are trying to inhibit my calling as an activist and a writer who won’t obey. But I’m like, fuck the patriarchy. Cuz I’m a badass mixed fat bitch who takes up space when she dares to, and is working on not apologizing for it.
So, the other day, when I was scolded by a male co-worker/pal for apologizing way too much in a particular situation, I was mortified. It felt like someone had punched me in the stomach. Proud, fat, feminist Pia? Apologizing too much? Shit balls.
It took me some quiet reflective time to really think about what had transpired. Maybe I wasn’t such a badass. Perhaps I was a disappointment to my fellow feministas. How could I, a self-proclaimed taker-up of space, find myself in such a quandary.
Or, maybe I was being a little harsh with myself. Probably. Yes. Pretty sure. Yeah. I think.
I am not Audre Lorde. Not even Audre Lorde was Audre Lorde. I mean, she was fuckin’ awesome, but I’m guessing she had her bad days too.
I find it very hard to break a pattern that I’ve been married to for most of my life. Especially when that pattern is encouraged in many areas of my life. And while I’m pleased I can identify the dirty bugger, self-awareness isn’t the only step in my quest to become free from the mental slavery to perfectionism and people-pleasing. I need to practice. I have to try things that feel uncomfortable in order for them to become second nature. I have decided that my apologizing episode only proves that I’m human and that there is always room for improvement.
Today, on my way to the chiropractor’s office, I held my head up high as I walked alongside the bustling street with the kind of confidence and fearlessness that encourages me to keep going on this healing adventure. Some days I feel fucking great, and other days are shit. But I press on, grateful for the path that my sisters have paved. Thank you Audre, Gloria, Rosa, Sojourner, Harriet, Frida, Bell, Hillary and Michelle.